Lopburi Monkey Festival 2019
The Lopburi Monkey Party 2019
Posted by Peter C in Thai Festivals on 25th November 2019
Lopburi Monkey Festival 2019
The Lopburi Monkey Festival 2019 was held on the last Sunday of November at Prang Sam Yod, also known as the Lopburi Monkey Temple. The Lopburi Monkey Party is organized by a local man called Yongyuth Kitwatananusont who owns a local hotel called the Lopburi Inn. The Monkey Buffet is a thank you to the monkey population for the part they play in the promotion of tourism in Lopburi.
Lopburi Monkey Temple
The venue for the Lopburi monkey festival is Prang Sam Yod, the 800-year-old remains of a Khmer era Hindu temple which is the most recognizable symbol of Lopburi. It is located in the old city area of Lopburi city, a short walk from Lopburi Railway Station.
The Lopburi Monkey Festival 2019 Parade
The Lopburi Monkey Party 2019 started with a parade led by a figure dressed as Hanuman, a Hindu character known as the monkey god who is renowned as a symbol of strength and energy. He is accompanied by four characters dressed in monkey costumes clutching various fruits that will be offered as part of the monkey buffet.
They are followed by a group of local Thai people dancing to traditional Thai music. Following behind are three Songthaew vehicles that have been decorated for the festival. A table is affixed to the top of each Songthaew on which platters of fruit are placed for the monkey buffet. Ropes and plants are fixed to the side of the Songthaew for the monkeys to climb up and various fruits are hung from the roof.
The Lopburi Monkey Buffet
After the parade reached the temple there was a short ceremony held at the entrance to Prang Sam Yod conducted by the Governor of Lopburi. The monkey buffet Songthaew was parked in front of the entrance and fruit and vegetable platters were brought out and placed on the rooftop table.
The monkeys were invited down with shouts and whistles. They raced out of the temple grounds and surrounded the vehicle, quickly climbing the ropes to the roof. Some fights broke out over the food but there was so much that there was enough for all of them.
Some tourists picked up fruit themselves and hand-fed it to the monkeys. The monkeys were not aggressive or as curious in the humans as usual due to the amount of ?free? food around. Some of the monkeys jump on your back though this should not be taken as threatening, it is a normal thing for them to do. Just shake your back and they will jump off.
The Lopburi Monkey Festival has four rounds of the Monkey Buffet at 10.00, 12.00, 14.00 & 16.00. The best time to get there is before 10.00 so that you can see the parade which only happens once. The first buffet is the most crowded with a lot of media people so stick around for the second buffet if you want to get some good pictures.
Lopburi Monkey Festival ? What did the monkeys eat?
Monkeys eat just about every kind of fruit & vegetable. At the Lopburi Monkey Party, they were served oranges, watermelons, dragon fruit, grapes, pineapple, apples, bananas, longan, cucumber, carrot, capsicum, chili pepper, salad leaves, & even Thai Khanom. This was all prepared by an army of volunteers.
After the first feeding, the food plates are free for tourists to take to feed the monkeys though some people actually sat down and ate the fruit themselves! If you come to Lopburi to see the monkeys don?t feed them sweet drinks & junk food as some people were. Remember it is better for them to eat ?healthy? food!
Lopburi Monkey Festival ? Monkey of the Day
Monkeys are expert at peeling bananas. This monkey stuffed itself before finding a quiet corner for a siesta. A happy day in Lopburi
The next Lopburi Monkey Festival will be held on Sunday November 29th 2020. If you are in Thailand it is well worth seeing as is the city of Lopburi.
Bangkok to Lopburi
If you plan on traveling to the Lopburi Monkey Buffet from Bangkok, you can take a train or passenger van.
Bangkok to Lopburi by Train ? Third-class trains depart from Hualamphong Station at 04.20 and 07.00 if you are visiting for the day. These trains arrive before the opening parade. Fares are 28 & 58 baht, one way. There is a higher class train at 08.30 which costs 374 baht. This train arrives in time for the second monkey buffet. The train station is 100 meters from Prang Sam Yod.
Bangkok to Lopburi by Van ? There are van services from & to Morchit Van Terminal (KO Van) & (D Van). Both these vans terminate & depart just across the road from Prang Sam Yod where the Lopburi Monkey Party is held. The fare is 150 baht. The van services start at 05.00 and are every 30 minutes. The journey time is 2 hours 15 minutes to Lopburi. Other van companies terminate at Lopburi Van Station from where you will have to take a Tuk Tuk to Prang Sam Yod.
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